Companion Animal Network Australia appoints first CEO

Trish Ennis

Leading animal welfare charity Companion Animal Network Australia – Australia CAN (formerly Animal Welfare League Australia) has appointed its first chief executive officer, Trish Ennis, in its mission to support the human-animal bond and an estimated 30.4 million pets and their owners across Australia. 

“Australia CAN has developed considerably with a range of strategies aiming to honour and strengthen the human-animal bond, and it was time to make this appointment,” Australia CAN’s president Dr Megan Alessandrini said. 

“Trish is a perfect fit for Australia CAN.” 

Ennis joined Animal Welfare League Australia (AWLA) in December 2019 as national executive and said she is honoured to be appointed as CEO as she marks her second anniversary with the charity. 

“Companion Animal Network Australia launched in October 2020 and today clearly speaks to who we are—it is Australia’s only national peak body representing companion animals and the industry that works with them. With a clear strategic plan to work to, we are now on the path of completing our initiatives.” 

In August 2021, Australia CAN successfully launched, which works to decrease the number of pet surrenders due to archaic rental laws, while bringing landlords and tenants together. 

Australia CAN’s next major projects include Pets in Aged Care and Pets in Business. 

“Australia CAN needs donor support to continue the work of our members and corporate support to develop our programs,” Ennis said.

“I look forward to building Australia CAN and developing strong partnerships and donor support to allow our members to continue the amazing work they do with the animals and families whilst continuing to develop the programs.” 


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